Says ‘we’ve been pounding them on ground & air’
Commander of Joint Multinational Task Force, Major General Abdul Khalifa Ibrahim has explained how his troops detected with drones and intercepted over 800 Boko Haram elements while fleeing near the Niger – Nigeria border at the Lake Chad region.
Speaking in an interview with the Voice of America( VOA) Hausa Service monitored by our correspondent, General Khalifa Ibrahim said the suspected insurgents were running away from Sambisa due to several factors including the fear of constant superior firepower from operatives of the Joint Multinational Task Force.
According to the Kaduna-born Army General, ” we deployed our drones that navigate the horizon, it indicated that there was a large human movement. After a close observation, we saw there were women, children and men, adult civilians.”
” We dispatched our soldiers, a combination of Nigerian and Nigerien soldiers of the Joint Multinational Joint Task Force, Sectors 3 and 4. They went and apprehended those elements. Where we detected them was that place called Kamadugu-Yobe, in the communities of Garin Dogo and Geskero. These were the places we went and arrested them.”
” After we examined them, we found that the majority of them were Nigerians. We then took them to the Battalion at Geidam, and the Sector Commander in Damaturu took over.”
” Now they are in Maiduguri, Wallahi they were up to 800. This is excluding those arrested at the Damasak axis. The Battalion at Damasak and the Brigade at Gubio also did their work and arrested those elements.”
Commenting on why the Boko Haram elements were migrating to areas close to the Lake Chad region, Gen.Khalifa Ibrahim said it was infighting amongst them that made some flee.
“They are fighting each other in the Sambusa forest. There is intermittent firepower of the military, both from our air and ground components.”
“Even though Sambisa is not under our jurisdiction, it is not under the MNJTF but under Operation Hadin Kai, they deployed troops to that area on operation, but what we know is that the infighting amongst the Boko Haram elements and the onslaught by our operatives, both on the ground and in the air, were chiefly the reason why they were migrating to the Lake Chad region,” he said.